Alexander Farnham (1926 – 2017)
The son of a New York stockbroker, Farnham was born in 1926 and raised in Short Hills, New Jersey. There he attended the Buxton County Day School where he was introduced to painting by art instructor Van Dearing Perrine. He then attended the Forman School in Litchfield, Connecticut and at age 16, followed his artistic calling to the Art Students League in New York City. A year later, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served on a merchant ship as a member of the Armed Guard and as a Naval artist during World War II. In 1946, Farnham re-enrolled in the Art Students League, where he instructed by Frank V. DuMond, W.C. McNulty, and George Bridgeman.
In 1953, while exhibiting at the Ridgewood Art Association, Farnham met Barbara Kes, another artist participating in the same exhibition. Both won awards in the show and later that year, they married. The new family bought a small farm in Kingwood Township, a small town along the Delaware River just outside of Stockton, New Jersey.
As a young, up-and-coming artist, Farnham was befriended by many of the older renowned artists at that time, including Harry Leith-Ross, Charles Sheeler, and Edward Dufner. These men, in particular, had a great impact on Farnham’s painting as their influence is clearly evident in his work. Farnham exhibited extensively in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York for over sixty years, winning well over 100 major prizes, medals, and awards. He exhibited nearly every year from 1955 to 2005 at the Philips Mill Art Association along with many of the renowned New Hope artists. In 2005, Farnham was awarded the “Honorable Artist of the Year” by Phillips Mill.